Hormones are the KEY to vibrant sexual health for women. Did you know that we have over 50 known hormones secreted by our body!? Our sex hormones, estrogen, progesterone, testosterone and DHEA and their balancing act or lack thereof, largely influences our sex drive or libido. What makes this even more challenging is that our hormone levels fluctuate with each decade. The good news is, that armed with insight and knowledge, we can help make our libido BE what we want it to BE!
In our teens, our sex hormones change wildly – resulting in some crazy behaviour. It helps to have patience and structure, knowledge and boundaries around emerging sexuality. Our twenties bring on more hormonal stability as we mature and establish ourselves in careers and self-identity. It’s also a good time to start thinking about using a good quality multivitamin (containing calcium and magnesium as well). It can assist in laying a healthy foundation and calm PMS symptoms if present.
Many hormonal changes that can affect our sex drive begin in our thirties. Testosterone starts to decrease slowly for both men and women, affecting everything from desire to muscle tone. Pregnancy can also dramatically your alter libido, although this varies vastly from woman to woman. Generally the second trimester is a time of increased desire and continues throughout the third trimester. Post-partum brings on its own hormonal challenges with fatigue and body image playing enormous havoc with our sex lives. For some women, it may take upwards of 12-32 months to fully feel “like yourself” after having a baby. The good news is that oxytocin, which is secreted with breast milk, is known as the “love” hormone and makes us feel warm and amorous to both our baby and our sweetheart, so save some of that loving for him!
Let’s take a moment now to talk about cortisol. It’s one of the most important hormone’s that affects us throughout each decade. Cortisol is mostly known as the hormone our bodies secrete when we’re under a high level of stress. It’s often called the “flight or fight response”. Whenever we’re feeling threatened or stressed this hormone allows our body to best manage the situation, too literally, survive. Many of us do not realize the impact that high, prolonged cortisol levels can have. When we’re under chronic stress, our bodies never have the downtime to recover and get back to normal. According to Dr. Kristy Prouse, Ob/Gyn and founder of The Institute of Hormonal Health, cortisol affects libido MORE than testosterone! Once the body does get back to normal hormone levels, a healthy sex drive often follows, usually.……
Hormone levels begin to decline more rapidly for most women in their forties and fifties. Decreased progesterone may cause irritability, anxiety and elevated cortisol levels. Testosterone decreases quickly (hormone of desire) and many women are perplexed as to why they simply do not want sex anymore. To make matters worse, with the onset of menopause, our estrogen levels decline, resulting in dry, thin vaginal walls, hot flashes and brain fog. None of which are conducive to hot sex! In order to help manage some of these uncomfortable symptoms successfully, I would recommend trying a supplement like femMED Libido or Menopause Relief. You might find them helpful in reducing many of these symptoms, naturally.
Hormone imbalances do not have to wreak our sex lives. Many post-menopausal women report increased desire that comes with freedom from responsibilities, children, pregnancy, along with, a commitment to better health, including their sexual health!